God Never Changes But He Changes Everything

The last two weeks have been busy here at Beacon. We were overrun by almost 500 kids from our church and community as we ran our annual Day Camp. We were blessed to share the gospel with all those kids, many of whom have no regular connection with a church family. As we have wrapped up Day Camp and the decorations have come down and life is returning to normal, I’ve been thinking about the lessons we taught and how much we need them, even as adults.

The theme of Day Camp this year was God never changes but he changes everything. The kids learned what this meant through the life of the Apostle Peter. We talked about Peter walking on water, his denial of Christ, his redemption on the beach, and his call to welcome Gentiles into the family of God. Each of these stories talked about how God changed everything in Peter’s life and in the lives of those around him. The lesson that stood out the most this week was when Peter walked on water. Jesus has finished teaching the crowds and he sends the Twelve across the Sea of Galilee in a boat. He then retreats to pray. When he is finished it is the middle of the night and his disciples are caught up in a storm in the middle of the sea. He begins walking across the sea to meet them on the other side. As he does this, the Twelve see him and are terrified that they are seeing a ghost. Peter asks if it is Jesus and then asks to walk on the water. Jesus calls him out, Peter steps out in faith, and then he sinks because he is distracted by his fear of the waves. Jesus pulls him up and calms the storm and the Twelve are amazed. It is an incredible story. The verse of the day for that lesson was Isaiah 41:10. It says, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Peter took his eyes off of Jesus, looked at the raging sea, and he was afraid. That is when he began to sink. But hundreds of years before that, Isaiah had already told Israel that they did not need to be afraid. God will uphold them with his righteous right hand. Peter could trust Jesus because he was God incarnate. Peter didn’t need to be afraid.

The incredible reality is that we don’t need to be afraid either. We will all face storms in our lives. We will encounter death, disease, job loss, trouble with our kids, and much more. Life can be a scary experience that is full of doubt. But we believe in the God of the universe who has promised to uphold us with his righteous right hand. He has told us over and over again in his Word that we don’t need to fear. We can rest in his strength and protection. I don’t know what you are facing in your life today. It may be a medical diagnosis that is devastating. Or the loss of someone you have loved deeply. It may be something overwhelmingly joyous like a child’s wedding or the birth of a new little one. Regardless of the oy or sorrow in our lives, God never changes. He holds us in his righteous right hand. And when he enters our lives he changes everything.

Josh Cervone